The U.S. made an offer to North Korea to reduce economic sanctions if the communist nation made significant steps toward denuclearization at a meeting earlier this month, a Japanese newspaper has reported.
The offer came during negotiations between representatives from the two nations that took place on Oct. 5 in Stockholm, Sweden. A source informed Yomiuri Shimbun that the U.S. is willing to suspend sanctions that prevent the exports of North Korean coal and textiles if North Korea shows they are moving toward denuclearization.
As of right now, the talks are at an impasse as North Korea wants additional sanction relief if they are to halt their nuclear program. The U.S. wants North Korea to dispose of their nuclear material and weapons and dismantle all of the facilities where they are manufactured. They also want North Korea to destroy their Yongbyon nuclear complex and permanently cease all uranium enrichment activities.
President Donald Trump’s special relationship with North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un may be able to jump start negotiations. Trump said last month that a fourth summit between the two leaders is likely to take place soon.
“It could happen soon. It could happen soon,” Trump told reporters while appearing at the United Nations. He also referenced previous groundbreaking summits for their importance in establishing a dialogue and a rapport between the nations that was previously unfathomable.
“People don’t give that meeting as much credit as it deserves and the relationship we established. It was a tremendous success,” Trump said of his Singapore summit with Kim last year.
Top leader of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) Kim Jong Un (L) shakes hands with U.S. President Donald Trump in Singapore before the first-ever DPRK-U.S. summit, on June 12, 2018. #TrumpKimSummit pic.twitter.com/POu8B5Pl1d
— CCTV (@CCTV) June 12, 2018
Kim and Trump have exchanged letters in the months since as their friendship has grown stronger even as bureaucrats from both nations grow frustrated with each other.
“I was really tough and so was he, and we went back and forth,” Trump said during a rally last year. “And then we fell in love, OK? No, really, he wrote me beautiful letters, and they’re great letters. We fell in love.”
North Korea is even releasing bulletins echoing President Trump’s talking points against his Democratic Party challengers.
“What he uttered is just sophism of an imbecile bereft of elementary quality as a human being, let alone a politician,” the Korean Central News Agency said about Biden.
“There is nonstop comment over his bid for candidacy that he is not worth pinning hope on, backed by the jeer that he is a fool of low IQ,” they added. “Yet, he is self-praising himself as being the most popular presidential candidate. This is enough to make a cat laugh.”
Hopefully the strong relationship between Trump and Kim can result in a peace deal, even if the two men have to decide the terms in a one-on-one setting where deep state operatives cannot sabotage them.